Friday, May 11, 2012

New Words and Pictures by Wayne H. W Wolfson


 When they killed Cesar uptown it came about by sheer dumb luck and a lie. His wife had not wanted him to go to work that day for her sleep had been all nightmares full of what had to be portents, an empty bird feeder swinging in the breeze, creaking like a hanged man, with every to and fro. A line of ants dead in their tracks, the bodies forming a wavering arrow whose now stilled tip touched the very base of their hill. 
 He kissed her forehead and told her that he would be fine but when she persisted he snapped, telling her that her anxiety was only because she had mixed her drinks despite having been warned not to. He had made his mind up to go, besides, it was too nice a day; had it been raining or even overcast he would have been half tempted. 
 At the office, the lobby receptionist and the guard who shared her desk seemed pensive. Everyone else was milling about, snapping into action every few minutes like freshly wound toys whose purpose was to pantomime a work routine until the key once again wound down. 
 Cesar sat at his desk debating on whether or not to send for coffee. He looked out his window, down upon the skyline he had worked so hard to rise above. If he could not relax or indulge himself every now and then, then what was the point, aside from the good of the people of course. He grabbed a few files that he could skim at home if he got to feeling guilty. In his mind he was already deciding upon which record he was going to put on first; Jelly Roll Morton, smoky but not dark. 

"Waiting For Pasta To Cook" (Marker & Paper 5x7)
Wayne Wolfson

 Brutus came in and asked him to poke his head into the conference room, just to sort of give his blessing to the end of quarter reports. He agreed, managing to not let his shoulders sag nor sigh too loud, giving the caveat that he did not have long as he was already late for a thing. 
 The door clicked behind him. The numbers on the overhead in black and red, in the future would they have any meaning? There was a coldness, it kept popping up, all over his body but mainly in the abdomen, chest and back. From outside came the soundtrack, the plaintive horns of rush hour traffic, the only thing that would have been even better, a chorus armed with old tin noise makers from every New Year’s Eve parties past. 
 No one made eye contact with each other, nor would they do so ever again even if shaking hands in public for etiquette’s sake. 
 As he lay dying, Cesar had managed to roll onto his side. For one mad minute there was a collective fear, each man suspecting the rest had held back on the ferocity of their blows and now none of the corsages blooming out of the white were mortal strikes. His arm curved at the elbow and he pulled his tunic up to cover his face. No one knew why, although Brutus suspected that he had been attempting to retreat into blackness with the hope that it was just a dream from which he could emerge upon uncovering his eyes, Such too is old age sometimes viewed by those in it.

- Wayne H.W Wolfson 2012

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